5 Best Payment Gateways for Subscription-based WooCommerce Stores in 2023

Fortunately, in 2023 there are many reliable payment gateways available that you can use on your WooCommerce store; each payment gateway that we will discuss in this article covers all the essentials, like security, good support, multi-currency support, broad coverage of worldwide markets. 

Choosing which one comes down to your needs and where your target market is. You may also have your preference. For example, you may have already heard of PayPal and Stripe and used them, but the other options we listed also have their strengths, and you may want to look into them. 

What is a Payment Gateway?

Before we jump into the list, let’s first quickly understand what is a payment gateway and how they help you accept payments online. 

Simply put, payment gateways help you accept online payments securely and legally. You do not have to process the payments manually, as the payment gateway will act as the middleman between your customers and your bank. The payment gateway will accept credit and debit cards, verify them, take money from your customer’s account, and deposit it in your store. 

Integrating a reliable payment gateway on your WooCommerce store will help you automate accepting payments, secure yourself against fraud, and add security for your customer and yourself. 

How Do Payment Gateways Work? 

How do these payment gateways help you? We will break it down in simple steps so you know the role of these gateways. 

  1. The customer will initiate a payment request at the checkout by entering his credit card details. 
  2. The form on your website is connected to a payment gateway, and the information from the merchant site is sent to the payment gateway. 
  3. The payment gateway will encrypt the information and forward it to the merchant’s bank. 
  4. The merchant’s bank sends the information to the customer’s bank for authorization.
  5. The customer’s bank will verify the card information and approve the payment.
  6. The payment is accepted if the information is valid and the merchant’s bank sends the info to the payment gateway.
  7. The payment gateway will send the request back to the website, and the customer and the merchant (Store owner) will see that the transaction was successful. 
  8. Finally, the payment gateway will complete the transaction by debiting the customer’s bank account and crediting the merchant’s account. 

All the above steps take place within seconds, and these gateways operate 24/7 globally, saving you a lot of time.

Which Factors to Consider when Selecting a Reliable Payment Gateway?

While there are many payment gateways available that you can use on your online stores, it is usually helpful to create a checklist and see which gateways meet your criteria. We have made a checklist based on our own experience that you may use. 

Fees: Look for a payment gateway that charges reasonable fees. These may include transaction fees, monthly fees, setup fees, and other charges.

Payment types: Make sure the payment gateway supports the types of payments you want to accept, such as credit cards, debit cards, and e-checks.

Security: Choose a payment gateway that offers strong security measures to protect against fraud and data breaches. We recommend checking the history and reviews of the payment gateway.

Integration: Consider whether the payment gateway can be easily integrated with your existing e-commerce platform and shopping cart. Also, they send timely updates to merchants and customers via SMS or Email.

Customer support: Look for a payment gateway that provides reliable customer support if you have any issues or questions.

Ease of use: Choose a payment gateway that is easy for you and your customers. The fewer steps, the better; if the payment gateway fields are added on your checkout page, that is the best option.

International payments: If you plan to do business with customers in other countries, make sure the payment gateway can handle international payments with fair conversion rates.

Reporting: Look for a payment gateway that provides detailed transaction reports and other data to help you track your business’s financial performance.

WooCommerce Compatibility: Last but not least, compatibility with WooCommerce; luckily all the popular gateways support WooCommerce these days.

Top 5 WooCommerce Payment Gateways for Subscription Businesses

We at SubscriptionForce have been in the ecommerce business for years now, and we build some of the new and exciting extensions for WooCommerce; based on our experience, we are going to list down the best and most reliable WooCommerce payment gateways that subscription businesses can also trust, as they accept recurring payments too. 

  1. PayPal Pro
  2. Braintree
  3. Stripe
  4. Authorize.net
  5. Adyen

1.PayPal Pro

Regarding payment processing, PayPal is one of the most reputable businesses; chances are you have already heard about it. Although they have many gateway options, some are simple and use the redirection payment method.

PayPal is widely used and sometimes seen as a standard payment gateway in western Europe and the northern Americas. 

Even though its reputation is positive because it seamlessly integrates with ecommerce stores and WooCommerce, it does have a bad reputation among customers and merchants alike. 

PayPal has the strictest policies and can restrict payments, freeze accounts and add unexpected fees to the accounts. Even though PayPal is our top choice only because of convenience, it has its tradeoffs. 

Following are the PayPal fees.

  • Standard transaction fees for merchants in the US: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Standard transaction fees for merchants outside the US: 4.4% + a fixed fee per transaction, which varies by country

2. Braintree

Also owned by PayPal, Braintree is a payment processor focused on subscription-based businesses.

Braintree might be the answer if you enjoy utilizing PayPal but want to offer subscriptions or are searching for a free option. 

There are no monthly fees, and all major credit cards and wallets like Apple Pay and Android Pay can be used to make payments. Your first $50,000 is free, but there is a transaction fee of 2.9% plus 30 cents.

For a simpler shopping experience, you can give your customers the option to save their payment information. A bonus is that there is a free WooCommerce extension for Braintree.

Following are the Braintree fees.

  • Standard transaction fees: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • International transaction fees: An additional 1% to 2% fee on top of the standard transaction fee
  • Recurring billing fees: $0.05 per transaction

3. Stripe

Payment gateway Stripe is also rapidly expanding globally; it can manage recurring payments and carry out automatic refund processing. The most common WordPress eCommerce plugins support it, and a free Stripe WooCommerce extension is also accessible.

All popular credit and debit cards are processed through Stripe. Additionally, clients can save their payment information, and it supports Apple Pay. 

Following the Stripe Transaction fees

  • Standard transaction fees for merchants in the US: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Standard transaction fees for merchants outside the US: 2.9% + a fixed fee per transaction, which varies by country
  • International transaction fees: An additional 1% to 2% fee on top of the standard transaction fee
  • Stripe Connect transaction fees (for marketplace transactions): 5% + $0.50 per transaction

4. Authorize.net CIM

Authorize.net, due to its extensive feature set and good security track record, Authorize.net is our top payment processor choice. CIM is a preferred option for many firms. It accepts all popular credit cards as well as debit cards, and it also manages subscriptions, preorders, and refunds. Customers can choose to save their payment information for their subsequent purchases.

CIM is a tool that allows merchants to store and manage customer payment information in a secure, centralized location. This can be useful for businesses that need to process recurring payments or want to make it easier for customers to purchase on their website. With CIM, merchants can create customer profiles that store payment information such as credit card numbers and billing addresses. This information is stored on Authorize.net’s secure servers, and merchants can process transactions without the customer needing to enter their payment information each time.

Following are the Authorize.net fees.

  • Standard transaction fees: 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction
  • Recurring billing fees: $0.10 per transaction
  • CIM fees: $25 per month

5. Adyen

payment options has a role in this.

Additionally, Adyen places a high priority on achieving a frictionless checkout process. With this WooCommerce plugin, the same is true.

Adyen connects with all types of local and foreign credit cards.

For instance, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Alipay are enabled, as well as iDEAL in the Netherlands, Boleto in Brazil, and BLIK in Poland.

To maintain the highest possible conversion to purchase rate, the Adyen WooCommerce plugin has been easily integrated into the WooCommerce checkout. The checkout process will be as easy as possible thanks to this plugin from the payment provider.

Complete detail of Adyen’s processing fees can be found on their website

Other Worthy Payment Gateways For WooCommerce

We hope you liked our top 5 picks for payment processors for WooCommerce above. However, there are many other payment gateways that we have used personally, and that is why we recommend to our readers and customers to check out too. We won’t go into much detail about them, but we will name them. 

  1. Amazon Pay
  2. Apple Pay
  3. Skrill
  4. AliPay
  5. Square
  6. WooCommerce Payments
  7. 2Checkout

Final Thoughts on Payment Gateways for Subscription-based WooCommerce Stores

As we see from our article, there is a lot of competition in the payment gateway space. This is generally a good thing, as each company will try to offer more features, transparent fees, and strong security policies to attract merchants and customers.

When selecting a payment gateway, it’s important to consider the needs of your business and your target market. Choose a payment gateway that is popular and reliable in the region where you will be doing business, as this will help ensure that your customers trust and feel comfortable using it. With so many options available, it’s worth taking the time to research and compare different payment gateways to find the one that best meets your needs.